The curtain opens on a messy apartment. Four men are playing poker, and the fifth chair is empty. They gripe about the surrounding mess, owned by Oscar, and they comment on the absence of their fifth player. This is the opening scene of the CHS production of “The Odd Couple,” a play written by Neil Simon.
The show follows the lives of two best friends, Oscar and Felix, played by senior Zane Saddy and sophomore TJ Sullinger, respectively. Oscar, a divorced gambler, drinker and grade-A slob, invites Felix, a recently dumped control-freak, to come live with him. Predictably, shenanigans ensue.
“The Odd Couple” appeared on Broadway in 1965 as an instant classic, and the CHS drama department has done the quick and lively show justice on our very own stage in the theater arts building.
The actors’ lines are delivered brilliantly, with impeccable comedic timing. Their chemistry on the stage is believable and engaging.
As I sat in the audience last Friday night, I witnessed an audience come unhinged, delighted with the wit and credibility of the actors. Truly, the play was a joy to watch, with the performances of Saddy and Sullinger being particularly impressive.
“Zane and TJ work really well together on and off stage,” stage manager Sara Phillips remarks. “They’re both really well suited for their roles.”
The story unfolds like so: Both Oscar and Felix are dealing with separations from their wives and children, and neither can deal with being alone.
Oscar tries to help Felix get over his wife, and Felix tries to clean up Oscar’s lifestyle, but the duo ends up involved with a bottle of green pills, two promiscuous British sisters and a burnt London broil, along with yelling matches and a considerable amount of chase scenes.
Sullinger and Saddy are joined by a small cast less than ten people in sum, though the actors make up for small numbers with big personalities.
“This is the type of show we would normally be doing in the Black Box [Theater], but this year we’re doing it on the main performing arts stage, which is a really big room to fill with such a small show,” Phillips explains. “I think it’s come together really well. Obviously, you should all come see it.”
“The Odd Couple” will continue to run this weekend for its final showings on Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m.
Adults are admitted for $12 and students for $6. Don’t miss your chance to see the talent of CHS students and to laugh until you cry!